Skin cancer is mainly caused by exposure of the ultraviolet rays coming from the sun. These rays are the strongest between 10 am and 4 pm and going outdoors without sunscreen on can be very dangerous. Australians are more susceptible to skin cancer because Australia is geographically close to Antarctica and there is a hole in Antarctica’s ozone layer which doesn’t filter the ultraviolet rays. Environmental problems, radiation exposure, and hereditary illnesses can leave a person prone to skin cancer as well.
Skin cancer is more common in fair-skinned people or folks with light-coloured eyes. According to one estimate, 40 to 50% of people who live up to 65 and are fair-skinned will develop skin cancer at least once. Common symptoms of skin cancer are an abundance of irregularly sized moles, changes in the skin and scaly growths. There are many types of skin cancers; the most dangerous one is melanoma. The visible signs of melanoma are changes in the shape or color of a mole, or a pigmented surface. Sometimes the moles can feel itchy or ooze out blood. Melanoma can be treated is early stages and a person suffering from these symptoms should receive immediate medical assistance.
Another kind of skin cancer is called Squamous Cell Carcinoma. This is not a type of melanoma skin cancer. The visible symptom of this skin cancer is firm red bumps, a scaly growth that sometimes bleeds and a wound that doesn’t heal at all. The common areas where these indications can occur are on the nose, ears, forehead, hands and lower lip. This type of skin cancer can be treated if diagnosed early.
A different form of Squamous Cell Carcinoma is called Bowen disease. It is a kind of skin cancer that spread outward on the skin. The other kind of squamous cell carcinomas which is invasive can grow inside the skin and spread throughout the body. Common symptoms of this disease are scaly or red patches that resemble rash, fungus or eczema.
The most common and easy to treat skin cancer is called Basal Cell Carcinoma. This skin cancer spreads gradually and occurs normally in adults. The basal cells can take many appearances including a white or waxy scar, and mostly occurs around the face, neck or ears. This type of skin cancer can also appear as brown patches on the chest or back.
There are less common types of skin cancers such as Kaposi’s sarcoma, sebaceous gland carcinoma and Merkel cell carcinoma. Kaposi’s sarcoma normally occurs in people with a weak immune system. The sebaceous gland carcinoma is destructive skin cancer which develops in the oil glands of the skin surface. Merkel cell carcinoma is normally seen in skin areas more exposed to the sun like the head, arms, neck and legs. But it can spread through other body parts as well. If a person develops skin cancer, it can reoccur even after the treatment is complete. Therefore, such people are advised to have a thorough checkup at least once a year.